Our Pillars

Therapeutic Riding

We address the unique symptoms and life challenges related to a specific condition or injury. When utilizing a medical specialist in these fields, one enjoys a deeper lasting benefit. The medical team, the student, the family, and the riding instructor all consult on each rider’s program structure. Together, we build the best individual lesson plan for the rider!

Adaptive Horsemanship

Many people just want to ride - to enjoy their sport, freedom, and the outdoors, and many people learn best by doing. Therefore, adaptive horsemanship allows people of all ability levels to be riders,  as well as partners with their horse and the volunteers.  It's therapeutic exercise for the mind, body and soul.

What Makes Us Differnt

Rider Advancement, Independence, and Confidence

Each rider is afforded the opportunity to gain independence and bond with both their horse and instructor in a rare way through equine therapy. 


Grooming - Before each lesson, the rider will spend time grooming and prepping their horse for the ride ahead. This gives them not only the opportunity to experience the care that a horse needs, but also the chance to bond with their horse and get to know them before the ride begins. 


Independent Riding - Each rider is given the opportunity to set and fulfill their own goals of strength and ability as well as guide and command their horse. This not only provides therapeutic physical activity, but also fosters a sense of independence and control for the rider. 


Challenging and Engaging Games - Trails and games encourage the rider to achieve optimal physical ability and offer and enjoyable emotional reward that stimulates interest and engagement in the therapy and self-confidence. 

Benefits

Physical Benefits

  • Improved balance and muscle strength - students have fewer falls, increased mobility and independence at home, school, and social situations. Sometimes this task is as simple as the ability to sit up at a desk or table.
  • Improved coordination, faster reflexes and increased motor planning - functionally, we see families can enjoy going out together, students can handle a lunch tray in the cafeteria, carry their books and get to classes, sit up at the desk to work and learn.
  • Increased core strength and development - the rider's ability to perform self-care, bathe, and use the restroom is increased.
  • Increased range of motion of joints - students are better able dress themselves and groom themselves.
  • Stretching of tight or spastic muscles - students experience less pain and discomfort in their everyday lives. 
  • Decreased spasticity - students experience  fewer falls and increased ability to walk and move around.
  • Improved respiration and circulation - riders and drivers experience increased tolerance of exercise and daily routine and better overall health and wellness.
    Stimulates sensory integration - the student's ability to cope with external factors is improved.
  • Improved visual spatial perception - riding and driving improve the student's ability to understand their position in space. Their position or orientation within that space can affect their gross motor skills and classroom performance.
  • Better hand-eye coordination - students experience increased ability to feed themselves, brush their hair and teeth, and perform schoolwork.
  • Reduction of abnormal movement patterns - students experience increased comfort and confidence in independent movements. 

Cognitive & Sensory Benefits

  • Development of learned skills - doing two things at once such as “whoa” and “pull back” creates sequencing ability, enhancing learning.
  • Tactile awareness and sensory integration - students experience fewer ‘meltdowns’ due to a touch, sight or sound.  Riding and driving promote emotional wellbeing and the ability to cope in stressful situations, ability to filter what riders need to move forward in a situation.
  • Improved application of tasks and skills - following multiple steps for grooming and dressing tasks improves function in similar sequential tasks (such as 'brush your teeth')
  • Sequencing, patterning and motor planning - riding and driving can help with  remembering how to get to class, location and travel patterns, what tools to take, which room to go in, and where to sit.

Socio-Emotional Benefits

  • Improved self-confidence - riding and driving promote independence, appropriate social interaction, eye contact, and communication.
  • Improved risk-taking abilities -  riders and drivers have higher participation in school, and are more likely to accept challenges.
  • Better emotional control an d development of patience - students experience fewer meltdowns, and improved socialization.
  • Greater self-awareness and self-confidence - riding and driving improve the ability and confidence to learn coping skills.
  • Achievement - pride, dignity, self-worth are all increased through our program.
  • Teamwork and collaboration - a rider's or driver's ability to work closely with teachers, medical professionals, peers and family is increased.
  • Friendship and compassion - students feel more confident  and able to have a friend or get along in the family unit. Our program increases self-value and motivation.
  • Cooperation - students become better at following instructions, behavior control, teamwork.
  • Personal hygiene - grooming and self care become easier.
  • Expansion of locus of control - self-control and initiation of self-determination activities become easier. 
  • Greater respect for others, both humans and animals - students show better respect and restraint with humans and animals.

“Benefits” as noted by the National Center on Health, Physical Activity, and Disability